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Published: April 23rd 2019
La fontaine Médicis
The fountain was built in the 1600s in Marie de' Medici's palace but moved into what is now the Luxembourg gardens in the 1860s. It is a beautiful sight tucked away in a corner of the gardens. Easy to miss but worth the visit.
We were rapidly coming to the end of our Paris stay. Funny how long a week seems when you’re waiting for it and how fast it goes when you are having fun. The Louvre
Anyone who has been to the Louvre knows you can’t possibly see everything in one visit. Luckily we had been there before so we were able to concentrate on one area of interest: Egyptian antiquities. We hadn’t booked tickets for a particular time so we got there half an hour early and were near the front of the line. Of course, they let in those who had tickets for opening time but we were in in no time. Again, it is so big the people spread out pretty fast.
We headed off to the Egyptian section but made a slightly wrong turn and ended up in the section where they discussed the origins of the Louvre as a fortress, then a palace, then a museum. Like the D’Orsay, I found the Louvre as a building as fascinating as its contents.
We weren’t going to visit the Mona Lisa because last time we were here the crowds were ridiculous. Not sure if they have
On our way to the Louvre we passed through this restaurant that intrigued us. I wanted to go back at closing time to see it fold up.
changed the setting for this famous picture but it is in a huge room both in area and in height. We followed the crowd and found ourselves gazing at it from afar. The pictures we took show that it is still extremely popular. We satisfied ourselves with having seen it at all. Even in one “limited” section of the Louvre there are many hallways, rooms and possibilities for getting lost, which we did. I came to the conclusion that the people who work there are not there to protect the art work, they are to help people find the exit.
The Louvre pyramid where the entrance is now located is pretty famous in its own right. You know you want to go there to pick up your stored packs but how do you get there from here? We had to ask for help. An interesting thing I read about the pyramid is that it was very unpopular when it was installed because it is so modern in such a historical monument. Now it is a real feature. People are funny. The Bastille
Apparently many people go to the Place de la Bastille expecting to see the fortress
Calm before the storm
We got to the line up at the Louvre pretty early. By the time we got to go in, these crowd control lanes were full.
that was stormed in 1792. It is long gone although there are markings on the pavement showing where parts of it were located. There is a massive renovation project underway that won’t be complete until 2020 (or later). Still, it was interesting to see the July Column that was erected in 1840.
You can see this column as you stroll along the Canal Saint Martin which we had seen before but didn’t realize it extends under the roundabout where the column is situated and goes another 4 kilometres. I found this out later or our walk could have been longer. The cemetery
The Père Lachaise cemetery is the largest cemetery in France. I was thinking our interest in cemeteries was a little weird until I found out there are 3.5 million visitors to this cemetery each year. It is served by 3 metro stops! It has three WWI memorials. When it was first opened in 1804 it was considered too far from the city (no metro then) but by 1812 there were hundreds of burials each year. Then in 1817 the purported remains of Pierre Abélard and Héloïse d'Argenteuil
were moved to this cemetery and that did the
Footings of the old fortress
Incredible what they have been able to uncover and restore.
trick. The cemetery was expanded several times in the 1800s and now has over a million burials and many more in the columbarium. Dianne was very familiar with the legendary love story between these two 12th
century characters. Based on the notes tucked into their crypt I would say many others were too. I was interested in seeing the tomb of Oscar Wilde. There is quite a map showing the tombs of many famous people. The next step
Now the "travel" portion of our trip begins in earnest. We had several places in mind once we had arranged our cat sitting gigs. We should have paid more attention to the distances between the places we liked. But, our agenda is what it is.
Somewhere we had run into the book series Bruno, Chief of Police which takes place in the Périgord region through which the Dordogne River flows. The descriptions in the book were pretty interesting so we decided to spend a few days there and settled on Pèrigueux as the town to stay in. It is the smallest place we have visited so it should be interesting. ToBeContinued!
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